Women's tennis player turned assistant loves Arizona
File / The Daily Wildcat
Former Arizona women's tennis player and now volunteer asisstant coach Kim Stubbe hugs head coach Vicky Maes during her Senior Day on April 19, 2014 at LaNelle Robson Tennis Center. Stubbe said she came to Arizona because of Maes and stayed because of her attachment to the team.
Arizona women’s tennis volunteer assistant coach Kim Stubbe didn’t want to part with her fellow teammates. Instead, she decided to stay on with the team as a volunteer assistant coach, saying she wears the University of Arizona “A” with pride.
Stubbe said her favorite part of being an assistant coach is being around the team and helping the players be the best that they can be. She explained how being on the sideline helps teaching by being able to visually see where improvement is needed.
Stubbe said she will always remember her playing days and the game against ASU that fell on Senior Day.
“Last year, when we beat ASU on Senior Day, our team [had] four seniors — that’s nearly half the team — and that was our last home match,” Stubbe said. “You need to know: Last year, we were undefeated at home.”
Stubbe added that the result of the day was perhaps the best part.
“I remember, I finished first, and I never finished first in singles, and that relief, it was just amazing,” Stubbe said. “I remember looking at the crowd like I felt my family was behind me, so it was an amazing moment.”
Stubbe said she didn’t just play tennis; she was very competitive in soccer and swimming as well. She eventually decided to give up soccer and swimming to pursue her competitive side in tennis.
“Imagine, like, you grew up at the age of seven, you play tennis till now, and it’s a sport I am so [passionate] about,” Stubbe said. “Tennis not only teaches you so much on the court, but it [also] makes you stronger off the court. It is such a mental game, and you really get to know who you are out there.”
Stubbe is from Belgium and will graduate this May with degrees in psychology and French. She said she came to Arizona primarily due to women’s tennis head coach Vicky Maes.
“First of all, the coach, Vicky Maes, very inspirational figure, she came to Belgium to recruit me,” Stubbe said. “I was very shy. My parents got along really well with Vicky. They were like, ‘Kim, I really trust her. You should go with her,’ and I was like, ‘Okay, fine, I’ll take it on. I’ll go to Arizona.’ From then on, I heard they had a really good educational program, so that was key for me too, because I always wanted to focus on first getting a degree and then tennis.”
Arizona made it to the NCAA tournament three out of the four years Stubbe played, starting her freshman year in 2010. She traveled to Gainesville, Fla., during her freshman season for the tournament, North Carolina her second year and played in Georgia her last year.
“I’ve seen so many colleges, and I am so happy with this school,” Stubbe said. “Arizona is like a family, a town that always supports their athletics. No matter who you are, you always find people who are behind you.”
Follow Stevie Katz on Twitter.